500 posts and I’m feeling darned pleased with my progress

I seem to be adding some more small projects along with the big 55 gallon drum idea. It’s okay now that I defined what I was feeling for the 7 year food project and have good start as well as a plan for the next few months I’m happy with my goals.  It was strange that both riverrider and I felt a very similar compulsions as we are very different types of preppers with different motivations and goals.  We are both approaching the same problem but with very different solutions and I think both are viable ways to get your food storage done.  I figure to get 150-200 pounds stored in a barrel and then buy the next “drum” and get started on filling it with 150-200 pounds.  I think that will give me the flexibility to take advantage of what’s on sale in the future.  Whole wheat is kind of low in price, oats are high and corn is sort of in between so I can fill up on wheat and corn and get oats as I can afford in smaller batches. Plus 50 pounds of oats should be more than enough for one person for a year.

RR is going with the Super pail method and I think that is great. Remember your storage must fit in with your life not somone elses ideal. If your system works for you go for it and if you want please share it. I don’t have all the answers just what is working for me. I try to be as forthright as possible so you can gauge what you can use and what you can toss away.

I’m looking forward to getting the bean barrel started this month as lentils and split peas are still a bargain. Lentils are a great protein substitute and are easy to add into soups and stews. Cash & Carry has several types of split peas  and I can’t wait to see if there is a difference in flavor of the different color of peas.  Even if there is no difference in taste having different colors will help, as we first eat with our eyes and just seeing another color may help with food fatigue.  I’ve been adding cornmeal into my diet and so far my body is okay with it. We Americans tend to eat so much processed foods that when we go back to eating staples and whole grains it can really mess up your digestive track.  If all you have ever had is white bread going whole wheat can be hard on your body. You can mix half white flour with whole wheat and give your body time to adjust.  If you haven’t been eating from your long term food storage start introducing a few meals a week.  Because you probably need to practice cooking these foods and your body will need time to adjust to real food.

It still sucks for buying ammo heck I saw 20 rounds of Mosin-Nangant 7.62×54 going for over $25.00 a box.  Before the PTBs started playing silly buggers with gun control it was $6.00-$8.00 for a box of 20. This is a 100 year old plus Russian bolt-action rifle. I’m not knocking the rifle or ammo but I find this price almost unbelievable. In the month of January, Americans bought more rifles than the Chinese and Indian Armies have in stock combined.  I think most preppers and survivalists are not buying much and this is mostly new shooters and beginning preppers/survivalists.  I like seeing folks get prepared but just buying guns and ammo covers only a small part. Most of us realize there is heck of a lot more involved.  But anything that annoys and flusters the PTBs is a “good thing” in my book.

Tuesday I will be taking Mom shopping so I can use her 10% discount at the farm store and Paul’s grocery store for  a great deal on Ibuprofen (500 ct. for $5.00) and pork chops ($1.28 per pound). We are going out to a little store/ gas station for some more real gas to have on hand. Gas prices are rising again so having few cans safely stored is going to be good to have on hand.  I  like real non-ethanol gas for storage and my car.  I seem to get about 5-10% better mileage using the non-ethanol gas and I know it’s better for my engine and ironically the environment.  I’m not sure I’ll meet my goal of 100 gallons of real gas stored this year as I seem to adding new projects weekly.   I have my trike for back up transportation and at least a couple of tanks worth of gas should be okay to have on hand.

We are living in historic times we are going to see a major shift in people and in politics and I have no idea how it will play out. Will it be  a new Renaissance or go back to the Dark ages and neo-fuedalism. We can go either way and it will be interesting to see what choices people and governments make of more freedom or less. So far it’s not looking good but it’s still early days.

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18 Responses to 500 posts and I’m feeling darned pleased with my progress

  1. riverrider says:

    j, nagant ammo is still available at a bargain if you buy in quantity. one 880 rd tin is about 150.00 and would last about a lifetime….the ethanol gas SUCKS! never had a problem with my small engines til now. every one of them is/are jacked from water in the carb right now. thats my project for the afternoon, and i used stabil. grrr! yeah, historic times indeed. i’d keep an eye on april 19th. might be interesting.

    • riverrider says:

      and congrats on the 500!

    • Jamie says:

      river, I’m okay on ammo though try to get 9mm or 7.62.x 39 is getting tougher and more expensive. Funny I those two calibres Is what I have the most of besides .22 LR.
      I need to take my lawnmower to the shop and have the carb rebuilt too. One reason I so happy to find a station that has real gas.

  2. riverrider says:

    j, let me ask your advice on something. i have run up a balance on my credit card recently. i have the cash in the hole to pay it off clear, but considering that the gov might cut off my pension in march, (again) or any other time, would it be wiser to make the minimum+ payments for a while n keep the cash in the hole? i hate making payments/having a debt, but i’m afaid to get caught short on cash. your thoughts?

    • Jamie says:

      river, I hate debt with a passion, but I think it would be best to keep your cash “in the hole” and pay off the cards as fast as possible from your regular budget money. March is only a month away and we should have a better idea on what the PTBs are going to do, so you won’t pay to much on interest. By that time you can decide if you want to change and pay off the card. But I think the Emergency fund should be just for emergencies!

      I wouldn’t add any to the card, but I don’t like credit cards and don’t have any because they are to easy for me to use and abuse.

      • riverrider says:

        sound advice as always, thanks. thats what i was thinking but it always sounds smarter when you say it:)

  3. taminator013 says:

    Glad to see that you are adding to your meds with the large bottle of ibuprophen. I have recently purchased large quantities of that along with aspirin and loperamide on amazon.com. The loperamide (generic Imodium) supposedly only has a 3 year shelf life, but I’ve used some from a sealed container that was about 10 or 12 years old and it worked fine.Keep up the good work. You are an inspiration to us all.

    • Jamie says:

      tam, Thanks. After reading about the Greeks not being able to afford or get aspirin. I have been trying to get stocked up on OTC medicines and getting 500 tablets for $5.00 is a fabulous buy on Ibuprofen. My Mom is stocking up on the generic Tylenol and we are both getting aspirin for our basic pain killers. Adding in all the OTC items we can think of for our 1st aid bins from oragel to zinc oxide and chemical hot and cold paks. I have started adding the pedilyte and Mom has a bit of medicine for the rug rats. So overall I’m feeling pleased with our “Medicine Chests” dee add some great comments on using “real cinnamon” tablets that can help regulate high blood sugar.

      • taminator013 says:

        I’m not sure about the cinnamon for high blood pressure. If I’m not mistaken, it regulates and improves blood sugar. Watch the Tylenol use!!! Very hard on the liver. My wife was using Alka-Seltzer plus on a daily basis for her sinuses and when she took a blood test for her thyroid meds the doctor asked if she was a heavy drinker because her liver funtion was really screwed up. Since she has about 3 or 4 drinks a year(my home brew) this was not the problem. When I looked at the ingredients on the A+ box it listed acetominephen. The doctor confirmed that this is really hard on the liver. A few weeks after she stopped using it her liver function returned to normal.There isn’t a problem with occasional use of acetominephen, but I just wanted to give a heads up. There are thousands of ODs a year with this med. Most of us take it for granted that OTC meds are a lot safer than they are………..everything in moderation. Except maybe prayer. And home brew………………………………………….

  4. Jamie says:

    tam, I agree the Tylenol dosage is something to watch. What we are storing is for basic aches and pains and a fever reducer for the rugrats as they are sensitive to aspirin and I believe it is called Reyes syndrome if they are under 12 years of age.
    Always glad to have another home brewer in the prepper ranks. I know I’m having a blast doing all-grain beers along with extracts. I want to add a yeast making set up along with getting a grain crusher in April and grow my own hops. Will have to see how the PTBs handle the economic mess they have created and the March sequestration before I take the plunge on the crusher and yeast making. The Hops I want to get only cost about $15.00 for all the Rhizomes so that is a done deal.
    Prepping can be a lot of hard work and most of what you do is not all that sexy. But overall having the knowledge,skills and tools to make every thing from a loaf of bread, a case of beer, a BBQ turkey and growing a garden is fun for me.

  5. taminator013 says:

    After a year or two you will have hop rhizomes all over the place. I made the mistake of putting one of my types on a trellis connected to the garden fence. After two years they expanded their root system about five feet into the garden. I dug them out, but just about any little piece that you miss will sprout again. It is quite an adventure making beer from all homegrown hops since you won’t have any idea what the alpha acid value is. My Brewers Gold were below the low end average for that type judging by the bitterness of the pale ale that I made, but I guessed pretty close on the Sunbeam Golden that I used in a Czech Pilsner. Like a dummy, I went ahead and made 5 gallons of each instead of scaling down to a 1 gallon test batch to get a better idea how they would taste. Like anything else, live and learn. What varieties did you get?

    • Jamie says:

      I’m going with Willamette, Cascade hops for ales and lagers and a Tettenger hops for my wheat beer. I tried Halletrau for my Weizen but the I prefer the tett hops flavor for my wheat beers.
      Hops grows great here in the valley as I have seen hops growing in terrible, rocky soil in alleys and fence lines. But I’m keeping the hops in the front yard and well away from my backyard garden. If I get it growing, I’ll plant extra rhizomes in the alley to provide cover on on a couple of fences.
      I’m very lucky I found my “beer lady” that lives about a mile away and runs a home brewing store and got about 3 folks on the “block” brewing beer extracts at least. All of the recipes I use are low acid hops and pretty simple as far as ingredients and brewing methods. I’m trying to make a “perfect” simple beer. Rather than make a so so complex beer.

  6. taminator013 says:

    Really good choices on the hops, especially the Cascade. One of my personal favorites. Great taste and aroma in the pale ales. I used to make a lot of complex beers and ales, but I finally realized that I just made them because everyone else was doing it. Now I usually just make simple pale ales and IPA. Just the stuff that I really like. I now leave the fancy stuff to the beer snobs. Refining your hops additions from batch to batch and getting the taste that you’re looking for can be really rewarding. What’s doubly rewarding is when your beer snob friends like your KISS(keep it simple stupid) ales better than their fancy stuff. Good brewing and everything else to you.

    • Jamie says:

      Tam, I saw Obama’s “I’m kind of redneck and home brew honey ale” and I was like why add stuff to make it hard to brew a good beer. I don’t mind a complex beer if the result equal the effort. I have a dark ale that I have brewed and is a good dark ale. But it seemed like I was just adding a lot of 2-4 oz. bits of differnt grain just to make it complex or hard.
      I still consider myself a bit of a newbie to brewing. But I have a great beer lady/supplier and I think she enjoys my brewing adventures almost as much as I do.

      • taminator013 says:

        I never give my description of Obama in mixed company……………I’m a newbie at too many things that I think I’ll need to master, but at least I’m trying. As to the beer, I like to use a few ounces of 15L or 20L crystal malt along with an ounce or two of 40L or 60L in the pale ale. To me it seems that if you use too many different malts, the the flavors fight with each other for dominance. Gives it a nice extra background taste though if you just use a little something extra. I used to use the expensive liqud yeasts that need to be refrigerated, but now I use US-05 or Nottingham dry yeast. To me the beer tastes just as good. Like the saying goes,”I may not know art, but I know what I like”.If it tastes good to you, then it’s good beer.

  7. Jamie says:

    tam, My BIAB amber I add a a little 80L and 40L crystal to my 2 row malt and it it makes a real nice Amber ale. I use a pellet Hop blend called Falconers 7Cs that gives a very nice Hoppy flavor to a recipe I modified to work for me.
    I use the Safale dry yeast for most of my beers and have had good results. Making my own yeast is something I want to try in the future and Rebelbrewer.com has a little yeast making setup for about $56.00 not counting shipping. Add the grain crusher and I will be able to do almost everything needed to make beer other than growing and malting the grain.

    Once I get the food drums done I want to do more on the beer making as that is always a good trade Item. Plus beer making is just flat out fun!

    • taminator013 says:

      Sounds like a really nice amber.What does BIAB stand for? Brewed in a bathtub? Just kidding. I like the Safale, too. I stocked up on Safale-04 when it was on sale. I’d skip the yeast making setup and put the $56 to other uses. It’s really easy to make a starter yeast from the sediment left at the bottom of your bottles. There is way more than enough viable cells that have just gone dormant because they ran out of food. You can just boil up about about two quarts of any light malt extract in water for about 15 minutes to sterilize it just like if you were making beer. After it cools down a bit pour it into a sanitized gallon jug or other container and add the sediment after it gets below around 85 degrees or so. Put the sanitized lid on the bottle and shake it up really good to aerate the wort. Remove the lid and fit it with a fermentation lock or just cover the top with foil. Let it sit in a warm place out of direct sunlight for a few days. You’ll be able to tell if it’s working because it will look just like your beer does while it’s fermenting because basically that’s what it is. You need to start a few days before you brew. You can even do it a few weeks early and just refrigerate the jug until you’re ready to use it. Try to use one of your newest bottles of beer to harvest the yeast. I’m not sure how long that the dormant yeast stays healthy and viable, but I’ve cultured some from a commercial craft beer that had a special yeast that only that brewery uses. The bottle was at least 8 months to a year old and it worked great. Some other time I’ll tell you about my adventures in malting. And I do mean adventures.Having a grain crusher is great,but it’s not as easy a it looks to mill 6 or more lbs of malt. I’m in decent shape, but I still needed to take a lot of breaks. I ended up taking off the handle and connecting a variable speed hand drill. Now I can do up to 20 lbs or so in about 5 minutes. Well, gotta go now. Catch up to you later and happy brewing.

      • Jamie says:

        The crusher I’m looking at is set upe for a standard drill. I already tried a mill using the crank method and I agree it will take forever to get enough grain for a standard batch. Thanks for info on the yeast I’ll have to try that method out!

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